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Curriculum & Leadership Journal
An electronic journal for leaders in education
ISSN: 1448-0743
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New publications

Ten Policy Briefing: Academies Evaluation 2nd Annual Report

Report 
The controversial Academies initiative has become the British government’s ‘flagship policy’ to address school failure in disadvantaged communities within England. It is hugely expensive, and it is not the only approach to tackling these issues. The Academies Evaluation 2nd edition report describes parents as much more positive than staff about the representativeness, inclusivity and expertise of the Academies’ governing bodies. It reports that trade unions have a diminished influence in Academies. It also found, however, that staff, pupils and parents were broadly positive about the principals. Of eleven Academies open in 2004, six improved their GCSE (final school year certificate) performance, and five did not. The official response to the report from the Department for Education and Skills picks out supportive findings and makes disingenuous use of data, for example by removing ‘don’t know’ replies when reproducing survey results to create misleadingly favourable impressions. (Adapted from text of the TEN Policy Briefing)
KLA

Subject Headings

School partnerships
Private schools
Great Britain
Educational evaluation
Education policy

Academies Evaluation 2nd Annual Report

 PriceWaterhouseCoopers LLP
In 2003, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) was commissioned by Britain’s Department for Education and Skills (DfES) to conduct an independent, five-year evaluation of the school Academies initiative in England. The Report provides an overview of the key findings to emerge from preliminary fieldwork and data analysis. The research has identified a number of positive findings. They include a generally positive endorsement of the sponsors’ role; strongly positive feedback, particularly among pupils, of the role played by Academy principals; and clear evidence of innovative approaches being adopted by Academies to curriculum, staffing, teaching and learning, and timetabling. Challenges for the initiative include work force development, particularly in terms of the balance between new and existing staff, and how to involve staff in decision making; a lack of clarity on admission policy for special needs students; and the persistence of bullying among students.
KLA

Subject Headings

School partnerships
Education policy
Educational planning
Great Britain
Private schools

Formative Assessment: Improving Learning in Secondary Classrooms

OECD 
Formative assessment of student progress is pivotal in identifying student learning needs and shaping teaching practice. This study features a collection of eight case studies from secondary schools, as well as international literature reviews and policy analysis related to formative assessment. It examines such issues as benefits of, and barriers to, using formative assessment; policy frameworks and implications; and formative assessment in practice. Achievement gains attributed to formative assessment are reported as being quite high, but it is not yet practised systematically. This book makes the case for use of formative assessment and shows how it can be put into practice. (Adapted from the publisher's description)
KLA

Subject Headings

Educational evaluation
Secondary education
Case studies
Education policy
Educational planning
Assessment

Fundamentals of Curriculum: Passion and Professionalism (2nd Edn)

D. Walker
The author reviews the USA's curriculum traditions, theories, reform and studies with a focus on historical developments. Research traditions, findings and developing research techniques are also covered. The second part of this book discusses improvement of curriculum in both classroom and school environments. Practical suggestions for teacher self-evaluation within these contexts are also outlined. See also the review in Curriculum Perspectives vol 25 no 1, p 68.
KLA

Subject Headings

Educational evaluation
Education policy
Case studies
Secondary education
Educational planning
Curriculum planning
Classroom management

Collaboration in Teacher Education: Examples from the Context of Mathematics Education

Andrea Peter-Koop, Vania Satos-Wagner, Chris Breen

Change is an ongoing aspect of education which must be continually addressed by teachers. This book outlines collaborative approaches to change by educators, within the context of mathematics education. A variety of issues related to both teaching practice and research within different cultural settings are covered, including classroom coaching, mentoring and co-learning agreements. Case studies provide examples for educational researchers, research students and practitioners. (Available from DA Information)

Key Learning Areas

Mathematics

Subject Headings

Teacher training
Mathematics teaching
Educational planning
Education research
Case studies

Becoming Emotionally Intelligent

Catherine Corrie
Emotional intelligence offers a way of understanding how we think, feel and act. This book presents emotional intelligence theory and related activities in a step-by-step format, educating readers about the impact that actions and behaviours can have on others. Teachers can use the concepts outlined to question how they apply emotional intelligence in their own teaching practice and classroom management, and gain practical insight from the issues explored. These issues include self awareness, motivation, empathy, recognition of choices and accountability for decisions and behaviours. (Adapted from publisher's description)
KLA

Subject Headings

Thought and thinking
Emotions
Intellect
Behaviour management
Teacher-student relationships